Saturday, February 5, 2011

Intention, meet Action!

Last week in one of my youth classes, a new student arrived - a little boy. He's around six years old. He asked if he *had* to take his shoes off. I confirmed that he must, so he carefully removed them, then unrolled the mat I gave him and sat down, cross-legged.

He looked me in the eye and said, very earnestly: "I'd like to learn how to fart in my own face."

I've never had a student more clearly state their intention for taking yoga practice.

Without skipping a beat, I replied: "Well, yoga can help you with that!" And I got him started on preparatory poses for Tittibhasana B.

(photo credit: Arjuna's wonderful website

I'm sure DR and Miss Stan will be happy to know that the yoga mats they donated to my childrens' yoga programme are being put to such GREAT use, helping the next generation of Ashtangis to develop *ahem* important life skills!


The end of week always feels very 'yoga-heavy' to me because I go to Pine Nut's Friday night hot class and go to bed almost immediately after coming home. Then I get up the next morning to do my Astanga practice. Yoga, yoga!

Last night's class was fun! As usual, the room was incredibly hot. These Friday night classes are very different from the morning classes I'm used to attending. The room is packed and there's a jolly atmosphere, like someone's having a party.

That 'someone' is Pine Nut, the teacher. His dialogue is energetic and fun and he keeps us all laughing. The sheer mass of people gives the room a bright, intense energy. And there are always a good number of brand new people which is SO MUCH FUN to watch and listen to. Hilarious!

Oh, and by the way, I'm not the only one bestowing nicknames at Hot Central. Actually, there seems to be a culture of nicknames in the hot yoga world (during teacher training, Bikram himself called poor Peanut "Bald Man"

My nickname appears to be...wait for it..."Miss Astanga".


I think I'm going to get one of those big ribbons to put across my chest - you know, the kind "Miss Universe" wears. :-D

I expected to have a difficult practice last night because it was SO hot, but I didn't. In fact, I had a terrific practice and nailed every single pose. All of my balances were solid, I brought my forehead to my knee in Dandayamana-Janusirsasana on both sides (first time!) and I held toe-stand on both sides.

Contrast this to last Wednesday's class, when the room was a more moderate temperature, yet I was suffering throughout the entire class. I always assumed my good and bad days in the hot room could be explained by temperature fluctuations. Turns out, just like in my Astanga practice, they're really influenced by ME (and, more than likely, my silly brain).

Good to know!

I really enjoyed my Astanga practice this morning. I moved through my Primary and 8 Intermediate poses, futz-free in 75 minutes. This still amazes me. I can still remember last summer when I couldn't get through Primary in under 90 minutes and it was sometimes nearly two hours.

My shoulder felt better today. No pain at all! (but I was backing well away from any transition that caused discomfort).

The highlight of my practice today was Sirsasana. I'm feeling strong in that pose and I think I may be ready to start extending my hold to a couple of minutes again.

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPad


sereneflavor said...

And this is why reading blogs rocks!

Claudia said...

That is one funny little boy!, I am sure he will find yoga to suit him and will become a great yogi... It is refreshing thta he has such clear intention! and it cracked me up

susananda said...

MISS ASHTANGA! Represent!!!
I love it :)

D said...

Hahahahaha, what a sweet kid!

Loo said...

I read this while we were away and it has instantly become a house favorite: I do yoga so I can fart in my face. Brilliant and so clear!

Stan said...

Hi R.A.! Sorry, I am just catching up now. I am so glad you are using the mats so well! Yay you!

Frances said...

So funny. That made me laugh out loud. I love the earnestness of kids. I teach a volunteer kid's class at our local Boy's and Girl's Club chapter and it always cracks me up and surprises me with what the kids say and how clear they are about what they want, and what they most certainly do NOT want.

I have a blog about yoga, health and creative living - check it out if you like -